Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Wandering Albatross on Prion Island

The wandering albatross is one of the largest flying birds on Earth. With a wingspan of over 11 feet and a weight approaching 25 pounds this is truly one amazing bird. Here on Prion Island the wanderers are performing their courtship rituals, trying to find and attract a suitable mate. The dance is intricate, the moves perfectly choreographed. Such a privilege to observe and film one of nature's best mating behaviours.

This pair is totally engrosed in each other, oblivious to the outside world!

Sometimes there is quite a bit of discussion as to just who is going to pair up with whom! A lot of side-to-side rocking, foot lifting, head shaking, and posturing goes on before an actual pair break off on their own.

Other times it seems that there is a singles mixer for all the newly mature albatross to meet and gather. Kind of like those awkward high school dances so many of us endured years ago...